Though he's recognized nationally as a health food expert, cook, and consumer food advocate, Curtis Aikens has never forgotten his struggle to overcome adult illiteracy. Despite his busy schedule presenting cooking segments on New York's local cable news channel, writing several cookbooks, and speaking at festivals and conferences across the country, Curtis remains devoted to helping other adults learn to read. In addition, he donates a portion of his book royalties to literacy programs. His success and dedication inspired NBC Nightly News and ABC's World News Tonight to feature him on their programs.
In addition to hosting Calling All Cooks on Food Network, Curtis has appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show, The Home Show, CNN, Good Morning America and Entertainment Tonight. He's been invited to the White House to meet former President and First Lady George and Barbara Bush.
Curtis' books include Curtis Aikens' Guide to the Harvest (Peachtree, 1993) and Curtis Cooks with Heart & Soul (Hearst, 1995). He's also worked as a food consultant for many companies and events, including the U.S. Open tennis tournament, New York City Plaza Hotel, United Nations cafeteria, McDonald's, Pillsbury and Balducci's. Curtis has been a personality not only in front of but also behind the cameras, having supplied produce for the TV series In the Heat of the Night and the feature film Glory.